MILLBURN, NJ — As Millburn Township turned the calendar over to the new year, its annual reorganization meeting played host to the state's governor, who was there to help swear two committee members in.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy did the honors for Diane Thall-Eglow and Richard Wasserman. Thall-Eglow was an incumbent on the committee, having just been re-elected to another three year term this past November. Wasserman is a newcomer to the committee in his first term.
During his brief remarks before swearing the two in, Murphy touched on a variety of topics, including his state of the state address, the recent shooting in Jersey City and more.
The night also saw Jackie Lieberberg selected as the town's new mayor. She will be joined by new deputy mayor Tara Prupis.
In her remarks, Lieberberg spoke about how she felt a sense of responsibility to be a good mayor.
"I am honored, truly humbled and quite frankly, somewhat intimidated by what lies ahead," she said. "Being a member of the township committee and now your mayor is a serious, difficult and daunting task."
In her speech, Lieberberg also mentioned using this year to take care of issues that in her words, "can no longer be kicked down the road." One such issue is affordable housing based on the Mount Laurel decision. That issue was drawn in to sharp focus last year when residents voiced their concerns about a development near the Short Hills train station.
As Lieberberg noted, some decisions would be tough for her in that respect, but she feels as though those are decisions that need to be made.
"Driven by vast technological change, our world is changing rapidly and dramatically," she said. "If our town doesn't move forward and embrace change, quite simply, we will be left behind."
Towards the end of her remarks, Lieberberg laid out another key plank of her platform, the expansion of township communication. She noted the progress the township has made in streaming their meetings, upgrading the website, and just recently installing a new electronic sign outside of town hall.
As she reached the end of her speech, Lieberberg reiterated that she would do her best in the spot to help advance Millburn Township forward.
"As your mayor, I will make mistakes and take positions that some of you will disagree with...I do promise that I will be respectful, available, will work collaboratively and devote all my energies to making Millburn/Short Hills a better place to live and work," Lieberberg said.
The next township committee meeting will be held on Jan. 21.